TOT VS CHE Match Preview
Jose Mourinho and Thomas Tuchel face off in the dugout for the first time ever as Tottenham Hotspur welcome Chelsea to North London for a tantalising capital derby on Thursday evening.
The two powerhouses have been in the title conversation during the 2020-21 campaign, but both Spurs and Chelsea are now seemingly focused on their top four prospects rather than an audacious bid for Premier League glory.
Hardly anything can separate the teams in the table ahead of this London derby, with seventh-placed Spurs – who have a game in hand – and eighth-placed Chelsea both boasting 33 points.
Harry Kane is expected to return from his ankle injury next week but is not available for the visit of Chelsea.The England captain hobbled off in the defeat by Liverpool last Thursday but he’s recovered quicker than expected.
Mourinho also revealed he had a productive meeting with Dele Alli on Tuesday, though the playmaker is unlikely to return to the starting XI for the Chelsea match.
Serge Aurier will return to the squad having been left out at Brighton following rumours of a dressing-room spat at half-time of the Liverpool defeat, but Giovani Lo Celso and Sergio Reguilon are both absent for the Blues clash with injuries.
Tuchel has revealed that Kai Havertz and Kurt Zouma are doubts for the Spurs match. Both players were forced out of training on Wednesday with unspecified injuries, with Tuchel admitting the duo will require late fitness tests.
Other than that, the German has a full squad at his disposal. Last time out Ben Chilwell was relegated to the bench in favour of Marcos Alonso, who was deployed as a wing-back.
Tuchel is expected to use a similar formation, with Callum Hudson-Odoi expected to feature at right wing-back once more.
Our Call – Away Win or Draw + Over 1.5 (X2+Over 1.5)